DS MODELS USER FEEDBACK
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Last updated: 25 April 2003
This page is for user comments and information specific to the Meade DS telescope models. Accessories and Feedback items appropriate to the ETX models are posted on other pages as appropriate. If you have any comments, suggestions, questions or answers to questions posed here, e-mail them to me and I'll post them. Please use an appropriate Subject Line on your message. Thanks.


Subject:	POWER SUPPLY ETX/4504
Sent:	Friday, April 25, 2003 08:51:04
From:	ARSASTRO@aol.com
Today i recived a mead 4504 starfinder to go with my ETX70.I have a
mains power supply for the ETX and was wondering if it would power the
4504.
                                            Thanks.....Andy
Mike here: I don't know if that is compatible or sufficient but will post your inquiry on tonight's Site update. You might always try the 4504 Yahoo Group.
Subject:	hope you can help
Sent:	Tuesday, April 22, 2003 20:34:12
From:	bigredcow126@hotmail.com (ben fisk)
ok i have this older telestar it is a ds-60 i am haveing a vary hard
time finding where to buy the autostar Controller and motors i was
wondering if you could help me with telling me to buy them on the net

    thanx ben
Mike here: You might check the Telescope Tech Tips page for some ideas. Also see "Steve Bedair's "Go To" Mounts" on the Astronomy Links page.
Subject:	Re: Re: Meade DS 2130 AT manual needed
Sent:	Tuesday, April 22, 2003 19:36:21
From:	raysult@sultexpc.com (Ray Sult)
I spoke to MEADE customer support yesterday.  They were VERY helpful !
They are mailing me the manual and any other paper-work that would have
shipped with the DS 213 AT.  I should have it this week.

Most of what I have read on-line about the DS 2130 mentions that the
eyepieces that come with this telescope are in need of being replaced
with some "upgraded" eyepieces.  Do you have any input on this ?? What
might you recommend ??

Ray Sult
Mike here: Glad Meade took care of you. I thought they would.
Many telescopes ship with lower-end eyepieces. But depending upon your use and the telescope itself, these may or may not be adequate. On the other hand, you can buy superior eyepieces for $$$ but the higher quality can be wasted on low-end telescopes. With that said and lacking any direct experience with the DS models, I would suggest trying out the eyepieces that you have and perhaps add a Barlow Lens (which effectively doubles the number of eyepieces in your collection). If you are happy with the views then you will have saved some money.
Subject:	DS60EC
Sent:	Tuesday, April 22, 2003 15:06:20
From:	TRAVIS.WHITLOW@newarkinone.com
For the person who can't get a good image of Saturn and Jupiter with the
DS60AT, I think it's likely just the quality that Meade built into the
scope. I just bought one to get the motors and tripod to convert my
ETX90 RA to a goto. The electronics work great, but the scope was a
disappointment. It performed just as the lady described. I made an
adapter so I could use my 1-1/4" eyepieces with it (the .965" that came
with it produced a fair amount of distortion, even on terrestrial
objects in sunlight). A couple of my 1-1/4" are Meade super plossels.
They helped some, but not a lot.

And here's one more experience I had with the DS60. My astronomy club
auctioned a (non-electronic) DS60 a couple of years ago and I bought it
for my grandchildren. It had a 1-1/4" focusser, but no diagonal or
eyepieces. I added a Celestron diagonal I had laying around and two
Meade "MA" type eyepieces (the ones that came with my ETX90) as
upgrades. Sadly, that one didn't perform well, either. But my grandkids
have put it to use and enjoy it.

I'm going to play with the new one a little more to see if there's any
way to improve the views. If I'm successful, I'll let you know.

Subject:	DS-60AT - help!
Sent:	Monday, April 21, 2003 14:05:27
From:	Rebecca_Jones@tufts-health.com
First of all, your site is great.  I think I've read every posting, and
I've learned a lot.  However, I haven't seen anything about the kind of
situation I'm experiencing, and I'm hoping you or one of the many other
folks reading your site can help.

My husband bought me a a Meade DS-60AT w/GoTo & Autostar.   Like many
others, he saw a scope advertised at a reasonable price in a big
warehouse store (BJ's), and thought it would be a good buy for a
beginner.

The rack on the focusing tube was damaged when I got it, so Meade
shipped a replacement focusing tube & assembly - with 1.25" diagonal
holder - for free.  It was a simple changeover - no lenses involved. 
The holder for the diagonal is just a small plastic screw-on ring, and
the old .965" fits the new tube.  So, I now have the option of using
both .965" & 1.25" diagonals & eyepieces with a quick switch of the
ring.

Here's my problem:  According to other DS-60 owners on your site, and
Meade's literature specific to this scope, I should be able to make out
the rings on Saturn, and see the bands - though faintly - on Jupiter. 
The best I get is a very fuzzy image with a distinct vertical black
line, or something like a water drop under a microscope.

No matter which diagonal & eyepiece combo used - .965" or 1.25", Jupiter
& Saturn are extremely fuzzy, with no discernible detail - not even a
hint of Saturn's rings.  Even worse, a distinct black vertical line
appears across both planets' disks as they reach their least "fuzzy"
view.  The line moves across the object as it moves across my field of
view.  It's like looking through a finder scope without a horizontal
crosshair.   In the same observing session, I was able to clearly
observe the Moon, craters, mountains, etc. near the terminator and rims,
and even make out the very tiny, but bright, dots of Jupiter's moons,
even as Jupiter itself was fuzzy & bisected by the black line.

I'd also had no problems observing objects nearby - landmarks, tree
tops, wildlife, etc. during the daytime that afternoon, and I checked
the lenses carefully for dust, dew, etc. several times during the
session.  The scope had been out on my deck for several hours, so it was
well cooled, and I'd carefully aligned it (works great, once you find
North) before starting my session, and the GoTo was working fine - so I
know I was looking at Jupiter & Saturn.

This problem happens anytime I try to view Jupiter & Saturn.   Is it me,
the eyepieces, the scope, or something else?

I tried the 965" diagonal w/.965" 2.5mm, 9mm & 25mm eyepieces, and a new
Celestron 1.25" 45 degree erecting prism diagonal, with PL4mm & PL6mm
eyepieces - no help.  The Moon & Jupiter's moons still looked fine, but
not Jupiter & Saturn.

On nearby objects & the Moon during the daytime, the focus is crisp and
clear - a dream.

I live in a semi-remote area, about 2-3 miles from the Smithsonian/MIT
Haystack Observatory, 1/2 mile from the closest road or streetlights, so
I don't think light pollution is the problem.  I tried fresh contacts
(I'm nearsighted w/astigmatism) switched eyes, did some deep breathing -
no luck.  If "seeing" was the problem, wouldn't I have had problems
viewing the Moon, also?

Thanks - Rebecca Jones
Mike here: From your description it sounds like you might be refocusing when you observe Jupiter or Saturn in an attempt to make the planet large in the eyepiece. When you focused on the Moon you achieved the correct focus position for the planets and stars as well. When in focus with a short focal length telescope the planetary disk is very small, especially with a 25mm or so eyepiece. If you think I'm correct, try again and go for a crisp view of the planet not size. Let me know.
Subject:	Meade DS 2130 AT manual needed
Sent:	Sunday, April 20, 2003 12:36:20
From:	raysult@sultexpc.com (Ray Sult)
I am trying to locate a copy of the original manual that shipped with
the Meade DS 2130 AT.  I recently purchased a new DS 2130 at a VERY
resonable price because the box appeared to have been opened and the
manual was missing.  I have tried to contact Meade but have not heard
back from them yet.  Any help would be GREATLY appreciated!

Thanks, 
Ray Sult
Mike here: Meade will probably send you the manual for free. Did you call or fax your request? Calling them is the best bet.

And:

I e-mailed Meade on Thursday. Planning on trying to call them by phone
on Monday.  I was just anxious to set this thing up.  Hopefully they can
fax it to me on Monday !  Thanks for your reply .

Ray Sult
Mike here: Meade doesn't have an email address to respond to user requests. And I doubt they will FAX the manual (probably too large).
Subject:	meade-bresser ds-b 80ec
Sent:	Thursday, April 17, 2003 03:37:38
From:	gure@fen.bilkent.edu.tr (Murat Gure)
I have recently purchased meade-bresser ds-b 80 ec refractor telescope.
Could you please criticize the product for me? As far as I know some
parts are made in taiwan do you know the Taiwan manifacturer for it?

With my best regards,

Murat Gure
Turkey

Subject:	re:  #495/Motor Problem
Sent:	Saturday, April 5, 2003 15:32:28
From:	rseymour@wolfenet.com (Richard Seymour)
To:	RKK12@student.canterbury.ac.nz
>  Every time the scope finishes slewing, the motors won't stop!
> They just keep going at the slowest speed which is very very annoying.

But it may be the correct behaviour...

If you have aligned the scope, you are now in Astronomical Mode.
The motors -should- run all of the time, very slowly, to follow
the stars across the sky as the earth turns beneath them.

That's good for stars, bad if you are looking at a bird or a tree.

To turn -off- the motors, do one of three things:
(a) Under Setup > Targets >  scroll to Terrestrial and press [enter]
(b) GoTo a predefined Landmark
(c) GoTo an Alt/Az coordinate set (press [mode] for 3 seconds, release,
  scroll down, press [goto] and then enter numbers and tap [enter])

Does that solve your problem?

The telescope automatically enters Targets > Astronomical 
if you Align, or GoTo any astronomical target.

have fun
--dick

Subject:	DS114-AT
Sent:	Wednesday, April 2, 2003 23:07:51
From:	dcurtis@gerdauameristeel.com (DAVID CURTIS)
Will the 495 autostar work on this scope? It came with a 494 but I,m
having tracking trouble and I thought a firmware upgrade was in order,
but upon reading, the 494 is not upgradable and the 506 cable bundle is
as expensive as the whole 495 unit. Would the 495 be the better choice?
Mike here: As you can see from the table on Meade's Autostar Update page (http://www.meade.com/support/auto.html), it will work. And if you get a #495 and do the ROM upgrade, you'll end up with a #497. Good plan.
Subject:	Pin outs on Meade Controller
Sent:	Wednesday, April 2, 2003 12:37:37
From:	kedrind@cox-internet.com (KedrinD)
I have a DS-2130 AT by Meade and the interface connection for the
proprietary cable is four pin the size of a telephone connection.  (I
never can remember if it's RJ 45 or RJ 11 but it's one or the other.) 
My question is...

Can anyone give me the pinouts for an cable between the Meade controller
and my hub so that I may use the Astronomer's Control Panel software
without being required to pay $50.00 for a two dollar cable?

Thanks.

Feel free to reply directly.

Kedrin
Mike here: See the Cable Info on the Autostar Information page. (by the way, it is an RJ11)

And:

Stumbled onto it after I wrote.  Sorry to bother you with it. 
UNBELIEVABLE SITE!!!!!!!!!!!

I lost part of my right hand in an accident last year and I purchased a
DS2130 AT not really knowing a lot about telescopes.  After realizing
the limitations of my instrument, I started looking into the ETX series.
 I'll certainly refer to your site before I make any drastic
investments.

Subject:	#495/Motor Problem
Sent:	Tuesday, April 1, 2003 21:25:45
From:	RKK12@student.canterbury.ac.nz (rkk12)
I have recently been having problems with my #495 handbox. The telescope
(DS127) would not move when I pushed the arrow keys, and I had to select
an object and slew to it to get anywhere. Anyway, I replaced the cable
from the handbox to the scope and most of the problems have gone away -
except one. Every time the scope finishes slewing, the motors won't
stop! They just keep going at the slowest speed which is very very
annoying. I've tried wiggling the cables for the motors etc. but nothing
seems to work. I have a hunch it might be a software problem. Please
advise.

Ravi Kandula
Mike here: Have you done a RESET, CALIBRATE, and reTRAIN of the drives? You might also consider upgrading the Autostar ROM using the software on Meade's site. You'll need a #505 cable and Windows; you can make the cable (see the Autostar Information page on the ETX Site) or you can buy one. Once you do the upgrade you'll have a #497 Autostar with all the latest object info and bug fixes.

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